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• ESPN said that the Wimbledon Gentlemen’s Championship – won by Novak Djokovic over Roger Federer 7-6, 1-6, 7-6, 4-6, 13-12 (7-3) – earned an overnight rating of 3.0 for its more than five hours of coverage up 114% vs. the championship match a year ago for Djokovic vs. Kevin Anderson. The match peaked at its conclusion with a 4.6 rating. At 4:57, it was the longest match of the Gentlemen’s Singles tournament this year and the longest Gentlemen’s Singles final in Wimbledon history. It also was the first men’s singles Major championship to be decided by a tie-break.

• New York Life has signed as a founding partner of the ESPN-owned ACC Network, the national network dedicated to Atlantic Coast Conference sports coverage, scheduled to launch Aug. 22. New York Life remains the official life insurance company of the ACC as well as the exclusive presenting sponsor of the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament which airs across the ESPN and ACC networks. 

• The Baseball Hall of Fame has signed a deal with VIDSIG, Inc., a San Francisco-based software company that offers live one-on-one video interactions between athletes and fans. The technology will allow Hall of Famers to “hold virtual meet-and-greets or autograph sessions through the use of a computer from the comfort of the athletes' homes.”

• Inter Miami CF and the City of Fort Lauderdale have finalized a comprehensive agreement for the 64-acre property commonly known as the Lockhart stadium site, following a city commission meeting on Tuesday evening,according to the club, which has soccer icon David Beckham as a major investor and spokesperson. "With this agreement, Inter Miami CF will proceed with structural and foundation construction of the site as it prepares to launch its inaugural season in Major League Soccer in March 2020 in Fort Lauderdale."

• As part of its ongoing NFL 100 celebration, the league will make commissioner Roger Goodell available to “announce the first round draft picks for every team” in one Fantasy Sports league. The winning league will also receive a custom NFL100 Trophy and an exclusive NFL 100 prize package, including a Bose SoundLink III speaker, a gold NFL 100 football and a NFL Vineyard Vines tote. Details here.

• The International Olympic Committee is moving closer to making a major change in the way it regulates how athletes can market themselves during the Summer and Winter Games. Full story here.

• Pete Frates and Pat Quinn, co-founders of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, have launched with The ALS Assn. the 5th anniversary of “Challenge Me” with a “new call to action to reignite the passion and generosity of the millions of people who dumped ice water on their heads in the summer of 2014.”

POLL POSITION

AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019 Starter Pool

  • Liz Cambage, Aces
  • Elena Delle Donne, Mystics
  • Chelsea Gray, Sparks
  • Brittney Griner, Mercury
  • Natasha Howard, Storm
  • Jonquel Jones, Sun
  • Jewell Loyd, Storm
  • Kayla McBride, Aces
  • Kia Nurse, Liberty
  • A‘ja Wilson, Aces

AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019, featuring Team Delle Donne vs. Team Wilson, is scheduled for July 27 in the Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas (ABC 3:30 PM ET).

KEEPING SCORE

The Top 25 MiLB Teams With Best-Selling Merchandise (alphabetically, with MLB affiliate):

  • Albuquerque Isotopes (Rockies)
  • Charleston RiverDogs (Yankees)
  • Charlotte Knights (White Sox)
  • Columbia Fireflies (Mets)
  • Columbus Clippers (Indians)
  • Corpus Christi Hooks (Astros)
  • Durham Bulls (Rays)
  • El Paso Chihuahuas (Padres)
  • Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres)
  • Gwinnett Stripers (Braves)
  • Hartford Yard Goats (Rockies)
  • Indianapolis Indians (Pirates)
  • Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (Marlins)
  • Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Phillies)
  • Nashville Sounds (Rangers)
  • Pawtucket Red Sox (Red Sox)
  • Portland Sea Dogs (Red Sox)
  • Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants)
  • Rochester Red Wings (Twins)
  • Sacramento River Cats (Giants)
  • Salt Lake Bees (Angels)
  • San Antonio Missions (Brewers)
  • Tacoma Rainiers (Mariners)
  • Toledo Mud Hens (Tigers)
  • Trenton Thunder (Yankees)

SOURCE: MiLB

BUY SELL

Weekend Box Office July 5-7
1. Spider-Man:Far From Home $45.3M
2. Toy Story 4 $20.7M
3. Crawl $12M
4. Stuber $8M
5. Yesterday $6.8M
6. Aladdin $5.9M
7. Annabelle Comes Home $5.6M
8. Midsommar $3.4M
9. Secret Life of Pets 2 $3.1M
10. MIB International $2.2M
Source: Box Office Mojo

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COLLEGE

BodyArmor Into NCAA
No. 1 Colleges Since '92
Notre Dame Builds Brand
Cancer Drives Home
Men's Hoops Are 'Toxic'

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Channel Chasers

NFL UK 2019
• Oct. 6 Chicago Bears v Oakland Raiders Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 13 Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Oct. 27  Cincinnati Bengals v Los Angeles Rams Wembley Stadium
• Nov. 3 Houston Texans v Jacksonville Jaguars Wembley Stadium

NFL Mexico 2019
• Nov. 18 Kansas City  Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers Mexico City Estadio Azteca (ESPN Monday Night Football).

Tuesday
Jul122016

Unanimous Decision: UFC Owners Sell Majority Interest To WME | IMG For $4B

By Barry Janoff

July 11, 2016: Hot on the heels of what might have been its most successful, and most controversial, event, the owners of Ultimate Fighting Championship have sold a majority interest in their business to WME | IMG for $4 billion.

UFC, founded in  1993, was acquired in 2000 by Lorenzo Fertitta, Chairman and CEO, and his brother, Frank Fertitta, from Semaphore Entertainment Group for $2 million, according to industry analysts. The Fertitta's operate UFC out of Las Vegas under the auspices of Zuffa LLC.

The UFC transaction is subject to customary closing conditions. Upon closing, Lorenzo Fertitta will step down from day-to-day operations, but both Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta will "retain a passive minority interest in the organization," according to Beverly Hills, Calf.-based WME | IMG.

Dana White will remain as UFC president.

UFC 200, held in the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night (July 9), saw the return of icon Brock Lesner (who defeated Mark Hunt), Amanda Nunes take the women's bantamweight title from Miesha Tate and light heavyweight champ Daniel Cormier defeat Anderson Siliva in a non-title bout.

The event was held in front of more than 18,200 fans and took in a live game of $10.7 million, according to UFC. PPV buys are expected to top 1.5 million (numbers are still being crunched).

It also was fraught with controversy, including headliner Jon "Bones" Jones being pulled off the card due to failing a drug test. Previously, Conor McGregor was left off of the UFC 200 card due to internal conflicts with UFC executives.

UFC fights air in more than 150 countries and all 50 states in the U.S. with the recent addition of New York, which lifted its ban earlier this year. The UFC's visibility has risen significantly over the past two years due to the likes of McGregor, Cormier, Ronda Rousey, Holly Holm and Frankie Edgar.

UFC official alliances include Reebok and EA Sports.

"No other sport compares to UFC," White said in a statement. "Our goal has always been to put on the biggest and the best fights for our fans, and to make this the biggest sport in the world. I'm looking forward to working with WME | IMG to continue to take this sport to the next level."

Among its roster, WME | IMG owns, operates or has official alliances in entertainment, fashion, action sports, baseball, basketball, college sports, football, golf, motorsports, the Olympics and tennis.

"We've been fortunate over the years to represent UFC and a number of its remarkable athletes," WME | IMG co-CEOs Ariel Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell said in a statement. "It's been exciting to watch the organization's incredible growth over the last decade under the leadership of the Fertitta brothers, Dana White and their dedicated team.

"We're now committed to pursuing new opportunities for UFC and its talented athletes to ensure the sport's continued growth and success on a global scale."

Silver Lake Partners and KKR will join WME | IMG as new strategic investors, along with MSD Capital, L.P. and MSD Partners, L.P. which will provide preferred equity financing.

"We're now committed to pursuing new opportunities for UFC and its talented athletes to ensure the sport's continued growth and success on a global scale."

UFC said that since its centennial event in 2009, its has "undertaken a number of measures to increase awareness among fans globally, expanding its presence in Europe, Latin America and Asia, and adding women's divisions."

IMG said it produces more than 52,000 hours of sports programming and arranges to distribute an additional 32,000 hours on behalf of more than 200 clients including The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (Wimbledon), NFL, Premier League, Major League Soccer and Euroleague.

The group also operates IMG Academy, one of the largest sports training institutions in the world.

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